So what did happened to the America I grew up in? Things have changed so much.

I was born in the late 1950’s the product of the WWII “Greatest Generation” after they had graduated college, got married and built a home. The country I grew up in had several characteristics I remember from my childhood:

– Made in U.S.A. was on every tag except a few toys made in Hong Kong or Taiwan.

– Things were made from steel and metal and not plastic.

– Toys were big enough and strong enough to ride on.

– Jobs were readily available.

– Your tools you got from your grandfather or father and they were always still good enough to pass onto your son or grandson. Built-in obsolescence was not an invented term yet, no less the business model of 99.5% of American corporations.

– Every boy (not girl) grew up thinking that they could be either President or a millionaire. Now both are so out of reach that there should only be motivation for revolution.

– Pick-up trucks were the cheapest vehicles on the road and ranged in price from $1,500 to $3,000 because no one but handymen and westerners wanted them. Lincolns and Cadillacs were the dream car you got after you retired with the gold watch.

– CEO’s were limited by industry standard to 35 times the average salary of the line worker. Henry Ford posters about the price should be something that the average worker can afford hung in most businesses.

– Candies were still penny candies and nickel pops were now a quarter.

– A phone call was always a dime and a letter was a dime, with postcards ranging from 3, 6 and 8 cents.

– The dime had FDR on it because he pushed the March of Dimes to help with polio and the saying: “Brother, can you spare a dime,” was the unofficial official motto of the Republican Great Depression of 1929 (there was another one in 1894 that caused the 1929 one).

– Ronald Reagan was known as a B Movie Star and ineligible to be a politician; except that he was a union leader and a former Democratic Party official. Now they want to name everything after him including the dime and the twenty-dollar bill.

– The Republican Party was officially known as the party of Abraham Lincoln, and not Newt Gingrich, Karl Rove, Tom Delay, Rick Perry, Sara Palin and Mitt Romney.

– The Tea Party was a quaint gathering of old ladies not something that can destroy the world as we know it.

– Patriotism was never an issue, that fad died out with Republican Senator Joseph McCarthy questioning it.

– Charles Manson was the scariest figure in our lives not Osama bin Laden and his league of wanna-bees.

– You were afraid to take a gun to school but every boy had a pocketknife.

– Fights were settled by fists and there was none of this Kung Fu stuff.

– Friday night at the fights was the biggest entertainment of Friday nights not Shark Tank, Honey Boo-Boo, or the Kardashians.

– America couldn’t get out of Vietnam because we had never lost a war (when asked about Korea, the people who said this, would say: “Well, that was a tie and a Police Action”).

– You could trust the nightly news from only ABC, CBS or NBC. When Walter Kroncrite said the war in Vietnam was “unwinnable”, it was indeed a fact.

– We were the nation that could do anything and the world depended on us to do it.  We went to the moon.  We started to go to Mars.

– The United Nations was a body that got things done.  Trick or treat for UNICEF was the most important thing a child could do.

– Earth Day in 1970 was a celebration of science and Mother Earth. Now we can’t even agree on Climate Change.

-“Happy Holidays” was a salutation that your Jewish, Atheist, or Muslim neighbor was so happy to hear.

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